Tuesday, July 28, 2009

My Favorite Animal Flicks

(In the latest poll Lance Armstrong is the runaway favorite for today's "greatest athlete")
(You "picked" Neil Peart)

You will notice that in this list of my ten favorite animal movies that most of them are one animal. I think it's because movies about horses are usually a little more sophisticated in the storytelling than the average man's best friend movie. I don't know. I didn't include any animated movies, thrillers like Jaws, or fictional animal movies like King Kong. If you're asking why Garfield and Stuart Little aren't on this list maybe you should be reading someone else's blog!


Based on a true story and full of great performances. This is just a great story.


Also based on a true story and features some great acting.


Also based on a true story....just wanted to make sure you were reading. Actually this is the only film of its kind nominated for Best Picture. My kids wonder how I can hate talking animal movies but like this movie (and another movie on this list) I just don't want CGI animals with their mouths moving. That's too cheesy for me, kind of like that stupid talking baby commercial. Actually I hate talking (or DANCING!) babies even more.

My Friend Flicka

Excellent family film that stands the test of time. Avoid the remake Flicka which is family dysfunction, not fun.

Toby Tyler

Underrated Disney classic with the unforgettable "Mr. Stubbs" the chimp. My kids love this one.

Big Red

Speaking of underrated Disney films, this one isn't available anwhere but I remember loving it as a kid. It is very typical Disney which means overly dramatic but it's a good substitute for Old Yeller if you want a happier ending. And by the way, Old Yeller and The Yearling are both excellent too despite the sad endings.

National Velvet

Another classic horse movie starring Mickey Rooney and a very young Elizabeth Taylor.

Lassie Come Home

This is the most recognizable and accessible Lassie film with young Roddy McDowell (also in My Friend Flicka) and again Elizabeth Taylor.

Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey

I realize this has talking animals (but NOT CGI!) and is a remake of the Disney classic from the 60s, but I don't even remember seeing that one and it's impossible to find. My kids have enjoyed this one for years and I have to admit I get caught watching it with them and try not to cry. I'm getting misty just thinking about Sassy falling in the water. (Do I really need to say I'm kidding?)

The Thin Man series

These aren't really "animal" movies but what would Nick and Nora do without Asta? Exactly.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I like steel guitar

(Saving Private Ryan wins "favorite Tom Hanks movie" by a landslide! Thanks for voting.)

I like steel guitar!

And what is up with the hate for 50s music? Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Ritchie Valens, Jerry Lee Lewis , Little Richard, Miles Davis, John Coletrane, Carl Perkins, Ray Charles...the BIRTH of Rock n' Roll??? You voted it the "decade with the worst music"....inexplicably.

I can see why the 80s wasn't picked "worst decade of music" with acts like Milli Vanilli, Michael Bolton, Debbie Gibson, New Kids on the Block, Roxette, Rick Astley, Pointer Sisters, Wang Chung, Bryan Adams, J. Geils Band, Loverboy, Eddie Money, and more crappy hair bands than I care to name. Not to mention the saxophone elevator music in nearly every movie that decade.

And which decade won "Best music"...the 1980s tied with the 1970s. In spite of all the horrible disco, the 70s did produce some of the best music, so no argument, but the 80s? C'mon people!

But thanks for your participation.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Where does Dorkdom end and begin?

If you watch lots of Harry Potter and Star Trek are you a dork? Or do you become a dork only when you throw parties and dress up like Harry Potter or Spock. I myself enjoy a little Star Trek (not Harry Potter so much) but I would never dream of going to a convention or wearing a Klingon costume. I also enjoy the occasional video game but don't frequent conventions or wear my World of Warcraft character costume to work. I am just wondering at what point people cross the "dork" line and become extremely lame or "girl repellant".
I like Star Wars (the original series, anyway) and I thought the new Star Trek movie was great, but I would never dream of going to an opening night showing at midnight dressed as a Romulan or Jedi. I guess that's where I draw the line of "dorkdom". Actually, I did stand in line for 3+ hours to get Episode 1 tix (and got rained on!!) but I realize now that was one of the stupidest decisions ever! (besides buying baby wipes at a gas station....never do that)

I guess those well-meaning dupes in the documentaries Trekkies and Trekkies 2 are textbook dorks but I'm sure others have different parameters. Let me know what you think.